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Inspectors Touring Holiday Haunted Houses

Last updated on Friday, October 19, 2012

(UNDATED) - You can’t have Halloween without haunted houses. In Indiana, you can’t have a haunted house without a permit.

Inspectors from the state are touring haunted houses between now and Halloween, and those houses won't open to the public unless they pass the inspection.

State Fire Marshal Jim Greeson says a haunted house has to apply for a permit just like any other entertainment facility, and they must pay for that permit, too. Greeson says a permit can cost anywhere between 99 dollars to just under 300-dollars depending on the size of the haunted house.

Inspectors look for violations of standard building codes, such as issues with electrical wiring. But since haunted houses usually contain a number of special effects and are held at night or in darkened rooms, Greeson says inspectors also check to make sure exits are clearly posted. They also make sure haunted houses use materials that are resistant to fires.

If a permit is denied, haunted house operators can appeal or they can make improvements and ask for another inspection, but Greeson says they won't be allowed to open until his office gives it's blessing.

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